Wednesday 19th June, 7.30pm. Steyning Centre, Saxon Room
At the age of eight, Iranian-born novelist Dina Nayeri fled Iran along with her mother and brother. Eventually she was granted asylum in America, where she made her way to Princeton.
Nayeri will be discussing the refugee experience, and its public and political perception, which is the subject of her powerful new book The Ungrateful Refugee. Weaving her own moving story with the accounts of other refugees, bringing us inside their daily lives and taking us through the different stages of their journeys, this book should be compulsory reading for all policy-makers!
Among the vivid stories in the book we see a couple fall in love over the phone, women gathering to prepare noodles that remind them of home, a closeted queer man trying to make his case truthfully as he seeks asylum, and a translator attempting to help new arrivals present their stories to officials.
Here are the real human stories of what it is like to be forced to flee your home, and to journey across borders in the hope of starting afresh.
“Dina Nayeri has written a vital book for our times. The Ungrateful Refugee gives voice to those whose stories are too often lost or suppressed. Braiding memoir, reportage and essayism, Nayeri allows those fortunate enough never to have been stateless or displaced to glimpse something of the hardships and subtleties of refugee experience. Written with compassion, tenderness and a burning anger, her book appears at the end of a decade in which division and dislocation have risen to a terrible pitch. It speaks powerfully from – and to – the heart. Please read it.”
—Robert Macfarlane, Underland, Landmarks
Dina Nayeri’s debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea (2013) was translated into 14 languages. Her second novel, Refuge (2017) was a New York Times editor’s choice. She holds a BA from Princeton, and an MBA from Harvard. Her article The Ungrateful Refugee: ‘We have no debt to repay’ in The Guardian has exceeded 80k shares.
Tickets are £10 to include a £5 voucher towards book purchase.
Tickets available from The Steyning Bookshop on 01903 812062 or direct from Ticketsource.
A licensed bar will serve wine, beer and soft drinks.